Week 18: Cool-down

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TGIF (for me) and Happy Saturday, dear readers! The weather today was beautiful, considerably cooler than the rest of this week had been but still sunny and warm. I hope some of you got to go out and enjoy the sun!

I had a ton to do today, so when I was the first to arrive and saw an empty parking lot, I wasn’t too concerned. Even if it had been a late start day,  I’d still have come in on time. Charcuterie board jars, smoked salmon terrine, buttering chicken liver mousse terrines, deviled egg filling… it was a rough day but I pushed through. I feel like Chef and I have the same exchange every day – “Do you have a lot to do today?” “Always, Chef, but I’ll make it happen.”

Just after 5pm, Chef went over to Pantry to demonstrate a new plating for the beet salad on our menu. Upon inspecting their mise, he decided the beet crackers they had made just won’t do. “They look like store bought pita chips!” he exclaimed. As if lightning had struck him with a brilliant idea, he rushed away, shouting at us to get him set up with a cutting board. He had fetched the paper-thin phyllo that we use for wrapping spring rolls and “bricks.” I grabbed my pastry brush and helped him, as he trimmed long strips and I painted them with bright pink beet pickling liquid. They turned out great, and it was really interesting working side by side with Chef himself.

As I threw the last batch into the oven, Chef was on his way out for a cigarette break when he stopped to tell Sous Chef S that we just got a few large parties checking in and to get everyone on line and focused. Just before he stepped out, he turned to me and said, “You might need to jump in and help out the boys on Pantry, but you’re really good at that. I like that.” I looked over at Pastry Girl, who was a witness to the conversation, and she congratulated me on getting a compliment like that from Chef. Wooooo!

Service was fairly smooth. We had that big rush when three or four large groups ordered all at once, but then it eased up a bit toward 8:30. We all agreed that Friday night kicked our butts much harder.

I had to butter my board jars before I went home for the weekend, so I tossed some butter in the microwave and went into the walk-in to grab the jars. To my surprise, I discovered that the beer batter from Hot-Apps had dripped down from the shelf above and straight into one of my poor, defenseless jars. I was livid and totally lost it in the privacy of the walk-in. With it out of my system, I composed myself and carried out my jars and quietly set them on my station. They spoke for themselves and before I knew it, everyone called for Singing Hot-Apps Guy and Musician Stage to apologize to me. Ha! Luckily the jar was salvageable, for the wellingtons at least, so not all was lost.

And now, I’m off to enjoy my weekend! Cheers!

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